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#1
Old 06-03-2008, 05:38 PM
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What sort of tea is Chinese restaurant tea usually?

Most Chinese restaurant tea seems to be around the same color as regular black/orange pekoe tea but has a more delicate flavor. This does not exactly correlate with the Wikipedia descriptions of black, green, and oolong tea.

I realize some restaurants might serve different forms of tea, but what do they generally serve? It would be great to get that combination at home!
#2
Old 06-03-2008, 05:45 PM
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Chinese restaurants serve black tea? Can you give a better description of the flavour? I'm intrigued.

I've never seen black tea; it's always been a type of oolong tea.
#3
Old 06-03-2008, 05:50 PM
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I have been to many Chinese restaurants and have had only oolong or jasmine teas served.

Also, many Chinese restaurants sell tea, although it typically is not displayed.
#4
Old 06-03-2008, 06:02 PM
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What color is oolong or jasmine? From the description, I don't know if I could differentiate between the color of strong oolong and regular strength black. I don't recall what oolong tastes like and I am trying to cut back on caffiene so I'm not going to do so to see if the taste is correct but it is possible that it's oolong, as it has some of the taste of green tea, but not as much as I would expect from the wiki article. In addition, the article says:

Quote:
Oolong has a taste more akin to green tea than to black tea: it lacks the rosy, sweet aroma of black tea but it likewise does not have the stridently grassy vegetal notes that typify green tea.
I disagree that the tea I've been having lacks the sweet aroma of black tea and lacks the vegetal notes of green tea: a bit of both seem to be in there.

I guess the only way to find out is to buy oolong for myself and see.
#5
Old 06-04-2008, 04:36 AM
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Have you considered just asking the waitstaff?
#6
Old 06-04-2008, 07:37 AM
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Green, oolong and black teas are all from the same plant, loaded with caffeine. They are just different ways of cultivating and processing the leaves. (And, to make things more complicated, even black teas aren't named consistently; "Orange Pekoe" refers to the quality of leaves used to make the tea, while "Earl Grey" refers to a particular type of flavouring added.)

Jasmine "tea" is properly an infusion, not a tea, since it's not made from leaves of the Camellia sinensis bush.
#7
Old 06-04-2008, 07:43 AM
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Oolong maybe? Is what you are thinking of sort of salty? Oolong, mmmmm!
#8
Old 06-04-2008, 08:25 AM
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I made myself some oolong tea last night. I used a glass tea mug. It was a very dark tea, whose taste fit well with the wiki description. To satisfy my own curiosity, I first made a cup with loose tea, then a second with tea bags purchased from a local Chinese restaurant. There was a surprising difference! I preferred the loose tea.

BTW, I had trouble sleeping last night.
#9
Old 06-04-2008, 09:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_C
Have you considered just asking the waitstaff?
I tried that once. The bewildered waitress replied, "Chiese tea."
#10
Old 06-04-2008, 09:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solfy
I tried that once. The bewildered waitress replied, "Chiese tea."
Which is what the boxes of tea bags I've purchased at a Chinese restaurant say. Well, they say, "Chinese Tea" with the type (I have had oolong and jasmine) in smaller type below. The bags have both Chinese and Engrish labeling, and are imported from China.

ETA: Like this, only different:
Chinese Tea

Last edited by vetbridge; 06-04-2008 at 09:17 AM.
#11
Old 06-04-2008, 09:28 AM
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A while back, when having dim sum, I found that about 80% of the time, I got a kind of generic yellowish jasmine tea, and the rest I got a pinkish one which I really loved. When I had dim sum in Hong Kong, I got the pinkish one, and I asked my friend. She told me that it's called Pu-erh tea (pron. poo-err but it tastes nicer than the name would suggest). She also told me that most places have both, and you can just ask. Back home in Australia, I discovered she was right, and most places will provide what you ask for (and you'll get a smile from the waitress surprised at a gwei lo knowing his tea!).

Last edited by TheLoadedDog; 06-04-2008 at 09:29 AM.
#12
Old 06-04-2008, 09:54 AM
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We had Dim Sum on Sunday, and they server Chrysanthemum tea. OK, but I prefer traditional tea.
#13
Old 06-04-2008, 10:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerowyn
Jasmine "tea" is properly an infusion, not a tea, since it's not made from leaves of the Camellia sinensis bush.
Jasmine tea is a type of Chinese green tea (i.e. Camellia sinensis) flavored with jasmine flowers. Here's a citation.
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